|Posted:||May 22, 2019 10:33 AM|
|From:||Senator Lindsey M. Williams|
|To:||All Senate members|
|Subject:||Expanding the Volunteer Loan Assistance Program to All Fire Service Providers|
|In the near future, I intend to introduce legislation expanding eligibility for the Volunteer Loan Assistance Program to all fire service providers in the Commonwealth and renaming the program the Fire Agency Loan Assistance Program, in accordance with Recommendation 10 of the Senate Resolution 6 Report (SR6).
The Volunteer Loan Assistance Program, also known as VLAP, was established with the passing of Act 208 in 1976 to provide low interest loans to volunteer fire, ambulance, and rescue companies for the purposes of purchasing and modernizing facilities, equipment, and apparatus. To date, VLAP has approved over $500 million in loans to benefit volunteer emergency service providers across the Commonwealth. But, as the 39 members of the SR6 Commission unanimously concluded, career fire companies could also greatly benefit from the low interest loans provided by this program.
Recommendation 10 of the SR6 Report established that career fire departments are serving cities experiencing greater budget deficits every year but are still paying the same price as volunteer fire companies for apparatus. Expanding the Volunteer Loan Assistance Program to career fire companies will help municipalities ensure their fire departments have modern, up-to-date equipment to better serve the citizens of the Commonwealth.
Please join me in standing with all fire service providers by supporting this important piece of legislation.
If you have any questions regarding this bill, please contact Ardie Griffin with my office at 717-783-7313.
Introduced as SB785